Well, it’s December, and this is the last Two Coats Selected Gallery Guide for the year. I love you, NYC art community, for making this the best art town on the planet.
Contributed by Rick Briggs / “Gold Gold,” RJ Messineo’s second solo exhibition at CANADA, is both a cohesive and a dynamically exciting effort. They make abstract paintings, often irregularly shaped, with plywood panels that are attached to the canvas with strong, rare-earth magnets.
Contributed by James J.A. Mercer / There is an undeniable lushness to the paintings and textiles in Annette Hur’s solo show “Watching from the Other Side” at Hesse Flatow in Chelsea. Elegant shapes shine through dappled light and leaves. Oils blur, drip, or dive across the surface at wild angles. But discolorations and deformations suggest that something is unresolved, something is in process.
Restricted to her studio during lockdown and cut off from large spaces in which to create site-specific work, Lisa Hoke felt the need to fashion pieces that were more portable and more presumptively permanent. What resulted is a scintillating revelation.
Contributed by Jonathan Goodman / Ann Schaumburger is a disciplined and systematic painter. She uses basic geometric motifs (triangle, rectangle, and square) to develop permutations of a core set of four brilliant colors that elaborate the intuitive resonance of a single structure: the gabled roof house. Works recently on view at A.I.R. Gallery draw on miners’ stone houses in Cornwall, England, and prefabricated metal sheds in Amherst, Virginia. The idea of a home, however schematic, evokes real-world associations, establishing a rich and subtle balance between form and content.
Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / Lockdown called for the safety and comfort of an inner sanctum, but that of course produced the urge for unmediated exposure to nature. In curating “Nice to See You Again,” now up at Underdonk in Bushwick, Leonora Loeb and Keisha Prioleau-Martin set about finding art that captured that virtuous tension. They have succeeded, presenting varied but thematically harmonious work by ten artists, each of them in some way conveying the hibernation and re-emergence implied in the exhibition’s amiable but also multivalent title.
Stephen Westfall has engaged with geometric abstraction in singularly rich and sophisticated ways for more than thirty years, never complacent but always considered. Last week, I had the opportunity to talk with him at Alexandre’s new Lower East Side space, where his work is on view through December 22.
Contributed by Leslie Wayne / Visual artists who also write criticism and reviews are not uncommon. Rarer are curators or museum directors who are also practicing artists. They face implicit pressure to stay in their lanes. But I would argue that, as critics, they hold a unique and valuable advantage […]
Contributed by Jonathan Goodman / Devra Fox’s thirteen graphite drawings on view at Hesse Flatow in Chelsea, two blue and the rest gray, depict structures organic in presentation but with an eerie resemblance to manmade objects such as furniture.
Contributed by Dion Kliner / Situated in Vancouver’s original Chinatown, the Sun Wah Center has been an artistic hub housing a diverse cross section of the cultural community since 2016. In the Center’s windowless basement, the Canton-sardine Gallery is isolated from street noise and has no natural light. For Kristin Man’s, “A-MARE to love-to sea,” the gallery had been submerged in a deep violet-blue light and the sound of water that spilled into the hallway….